Monday, July 11, 2011

Lap Band Gal asked:

Question for you: How do you overcome your occasional unhealthy food choices or lack of exercise behaviors?  How do you get your brain in the right place to be successful?  I want to know.

I was fascinated.  This whole month I have been eating better than in years.  Until I read her post, I would have said it was the lapband that gave me the strength to be successful.  But she has one herself, so maybe that's not it.   And its not, you know?  The lapband is one of the tools that I am using to be successful.  The lapband evened the playing field for me - I don't seem to have excess insulin triggering me to eat excess sugar anymore.  My blood sugar is normal.  My GERD is gone.  I am just an ordinary fat woman now, when it comes to my blood chemistry and such.  I can get full.  I can breathe.  I can walk the track.  I can release this weight.

"Knowledge Does Not Yield Behavior" - you aren't kidding!  Most fat people could write a diet book!  Or two....

So why am I doing all this?  That's the question, right?  Why am I not having ice cream for dinner?  Why am I having protein bars instead of candy bars?  Why am I wearing my fitbit?

I think I hit bottom, really.  I got so that my life was so painful that I can't imagine going back to living that way.   It's still very immediate and real to me, in the second month of banding.  The big jump down the scale is gone, and now it seems to be creep, creep as I wait for my first fill appointment.  I have clothes in my closet that are too small, that I want to wear again.

And then there's the rest of the question, what do you do when you've had an unhealthy behavior?  I've had some of those this month too.  It's certainly not been a perfect month.  More like a month of finding out that some things don't change for me.  If there's a piece of pie in the fridge that's going to be mine, I will still get up in the middle of the night and eat it.  I didn't eat most of the crust, but I did eat it at something like one in the morning of the night after V and I went to Village Inn and they gave us free slices of pie to go.  Next time,  he needs to take it with him, or I need to not bring it home.  

The big thing for me is not to beat myself up for eating.  not to feel like I immediately have to "confess" some sort of "sin".  That mind set will not serve me well.  The next time we were in Village Inn, though, I told V about the pie incident since he is my support system.  And it wasn't free pie day so I didn't have to figure out what to do.  It wasn't confession, it was conversation.  Owning.  Saying what I would rather have happen next time.

They do say that compulsive eating is 10% eating, 90% beating the cr*p out of yourself in internal conversation....hating yourself.  Saying things to yourself that you would never dream of saying to your best friend.  Because that's what I need to be, my own bestie, standing up for Miri no matter what she does...

I've been trying not to wonder what you use for motivation once you hit goal.  The last time I hit a GOAL (a really good weight) was so long ago, and I was probably at my goal weight for about 5 minutes.  I'm hoping that this time the improved health, the great clothes, the support of the BOOBS, the fact that I'm out here on the internet, will help me to be motivated to stay slender and healthy.  Right now, that's so far away, I can't even imagine that.  I am imagining, instead, wearing a dress that will fit me when I am 10 or 15 pounds lighter.  It's sitting in my closet and smiling at me.  I can remember wearing that dress a few years ago.  I know that feeling, and I can almost taste it.

And of course, this time around I have the Law of Attraction  on my side.  The more you think and feel it, the closer it comes.  I can do this because my mind is able to wrap around it, 10 pounds at a time.  I can use the technology to make me better, stronger, than I was before.  I can use EFT to exorcise the ghosts of my childhood, of my young adulthood, of my married life, of my mistakes.  I can use the fitbit to show myself how strong I am, and never mind all the gym classes where I didn't get picked for the team and the teacher, as well as the kids, made fun of me.  I can get full, and I can I eat my food and then stop, and think about something besides food! 

Why do I want to do it?  I want to be able to dance again, to go square-dancing for a whole night and dance every tip, not to be red in the face and whooping for breath.  I want to have great dance clothes to wear and to be able to wear a heeled shoe for the round dancing... I want to go for more walks, maybe even hikes with V.  I want to go back to Mesa Verde and go on the hiking trails, the ones neither of us dared sign up for last time.   I want to be able to perch with my hip on a table or a counter without worrying about a creaking or cracking noise... I want to be able to bring a small low beach chair (weight limit 200) !  Heck, I want to be able to put on my right sock and shoe without having to sit on the bed! 

You might ask, so, Miri, why couldn't you do these things before the magic belt?  And I will tell you, before my band, I felt like I was starving all the time.  I didn't care about anything except getting some food to take that ache away, to not be starving for 10 minutes if I was lucky.  The pain of the hunger was so bad, I didn't care.   And I couldn't get my breath, I had no energy.  I would go to work and then come home and watch TV.  Walk around, what, are you nuts? 

It was so funny - today, I went to someone's desk to fix some software.  She used that opportunity to get herself more coffee and come back to her desk with little cheesecakes or something.  I guess they were in the break room.  In the old days I would have had to go there and see if there were any left, and if there weren't, I would have had to go down to the little store for something.  Gosh, I wasn't even interested.  I was full from my breakfast and I just wanted to adjust the software and go on to the next person who was paging me.  It was wild, wild!  Oh and I wanted to walk the long way around to the next person, since it wasn't urgent and that way I could have more steps.  I wondered for a moment if I'd been replaced by an alien or a pod person, but I still seem to be me.  Only better. 

I realize I'm still in my honeymoon phase.  Gosh I hope this lasts forever.  But it probably won't, which is why I'm blogging.  When I have forgotten why I am doing this, why walking the track is better than chocolate cake,  I hope I will come back here and read my own answers.  Because I always wanted this, I just couldn't physically do it.  The band has fixed something that was wrong with me.  The stomach/brain/blood/nerve connection is different. 

I think it helps that I work to make every meal something that tastes good, even if its 2 bites big.  I'm buying things that I want - more exotic flavors of Greek yogurt, different spice blends, really delicious protein bars, flavorings for my water bottle.  Everything I eat tastes really good.   I used to eat whatever was around, even if I'd take a bite and didn't really like it.  I wouldn't eat rotten food.  But I would eat junk.  Things made out of things I can't pronounce.  And way too much food, so my tummy would hurt, because the pain of hunger would go away for a bit.

I had to laugh the other night - I got up and I chose to eat something in the middle of the night, and what I had was a bowl (small, I don't eat out of large bowls anymore) of 2% milk and Special K cereal.  Now granted, I wasn't supposed to have it, and I had to add it to my calories.   But really,  I used to eat 10 cookies and a huge bowl of ice cream.  But there isn't any.  Seriously.  Special K.  Somewhere there's a Hostess bakery screaming in pain.  And yes, I ate in the night and I didn't yell at myself about it.  Just added it to the list of things I ate that day! 

I wrap my mind around success because you folks out there in internet land have done this, have gotten on board.  The people in my doctor's office who you would never guess had a band and were fat, they have done it.  Lots of people have done it.  It's totally possible.  I wrap my mind around success, looking at the before and after pictures, knowing I am still a before, or at least a during, and panting to be an after!  

 And the last part of it for me, I guess, is that this isn't one more diet, one more gym that I am joining.  This is my life, and there isn't any failure because the journey is it.  There isn't really a destination.  Because when I'm at goal weight the journey will be about maintenance.  And about continuing to remember why.  But even when I slip and fall it won't matter because there is no blowing it.  My surgeon will never discharge me, I will be his patient for the rest of my life.  He never discharges patients.  His support groups are always free.  There is always a month with a Back to Basics class in it, and in fact I'm scheduled for my first Back to Basics in about 2 months from now.

Does this commitment to a group of people scare my Aquarian soul?  Who, me?  There's a reason I have no tattoos (and not just because I don't like how they look).  Yeah, it feels weird.  Like I've joined a new family.  Family hasn't been the greatest and most permanent word in my life.  Although now I have my sister and my kids, and they are my family.  And V and I are pretty steady, I don't worry anymore about if we will stay together.... so at 50, maybe I'm ready to be a part of this elite group of banditas.  Forever.  Or at least in this life.

Abraham says, "You can never get it wrong.  You can never get it done."   I think nowhere is that truer for me than this journey, this never ending journey from aches and pains into ability and delight. 

The real true me:


  1. AMAZING post!!! When you are feeling unmotivated or struggling, come back to this post and read it again :)

  2. This is a fantastic post!! I love your great attitude and I agree with Lap Band Gal, when you are struggling in the future make sure you come back and read this post!

  3. What a great post! Thanks for sharing with us Miri. And that picture of you on the tricycle is just A-freaking-dorable!!